Changes to Employment Permits System to allow Healthcare Assistants and other health care workers to apply for Employment Permits

The Department of Enterprise Trade and Employment have announced important changes to the Employment Permit system which will take effect from the 14th of June 2021. The changes are being implemented to address significant skills and labor shortages in the healthcare and nursing home sectors.

From the 14th of June 2021, the following health sector workers are now eligible to apply for employment permits:

  • Health Care Assistants
  • Social Workers
  • Occupational Therapists
  • Physiotherapists
  • Speech & Language Therapists

In addition, Dieticians are being added to the Critical Skills List to enable them to apply for Critical Skills Employment Permits.

The minimum remuneration requirement for healthcare assistants to qualify for an employment permit will be €27,000 per annum.  In addition to this,  there will be a requirement that healthcare workers should have obtained a relevant QQI Level 5  qualification after two years of employment.

The immigration team at Sinnott Solicitors based in our Dublin and Cork offices have frequently been contacted by Health Care Assistants seeking to apply for employment permits. We are delighted to see the above changes which will address immediate skills and labor shortages in our busy and under-staffed healthcare system. We have many clients who are currently resident in the State on immigration permissions such as Stamp 1G Student Graduate permissions or Stamp 2 Student permissions who are working as Health care assistants and workers in the State  but have been unable to apply for an employment permit previously due to their jobs being listed on the Ineligible Occupations List. The changes to the system will permit thousands of non-EEA nationals currently employed or seeking to secure employment in the Irish Healthcare sector to now apply for an employment permit.

In addition to filling significant labor shortages in the healthcare sector, it is also an important recognition of the vital work that Healthcare Workers and Assistants carry out on a daily basis. It will permit many applicants who have previously been excluded from the employment permit system to now benefit from same.

With offices in Dublin and Cork, Sinnott Solicitors have a dedicated team of Immigration Solicitors and Consultants who are experts on all Irish immigration matters including Irish Employment Permits and Employment Visas. If you have any queries on the contents of this article, or require assistance with your employment permit application, do not hesitate to contact our offices today on or 014062862.